CRESTWOOD, IL – A wild contest ended on a walk-off fielder’s choice and error, as Tyler Alamo made it home on an errant throw during a rundown to give the ThunderBolts a dramatic 4-3 11 inning victory at Ozinga Field Wednesday night.
Trailing 3-2 in the bottom of the 11thinning, Alamo smacked a double to the right field fence that drove in Chase Cockrell, who represented the international tiebreaking baserunner. Taisei Fukuhara followed with a single to put runners at the corners in front of Tyler Straub.
Straub hit a groundball to Washington (28-40) shortstop Ryan Cox who fired home putting Alamo in a rundown, but after a quick game of catch, third baseman Shane Hughes’ throw was wild and Alamo crossed home plate to send the Windy City (29-39) faithful home pleased.
Offensively, the ThunderBolts got on the board first in the second inning. Fukuhara singled and ultimately came around to score from second base on a fly ball to right field. Fukuhara tagged to third on the play and scored after Hector Roa’s throw got away from the third baseman.
The Wild Things managed to tie it in the third, but a double from Straub set up Jordan Swiss, who smacked an RBI single to right field to give the Bolts a 2-1 advantage.
Tyler Thornton was sparkling through his eight innings tonight, but could not get out of a jam in the seventh. A single and double on two pitches set up a Drew Bene two-out RBI infield single, despite shortstop Brynn Martinez’s best effort.
The Wild Things scored its international tiebreaking run in the 11thon a groundball to short. They would not have a chance to respond.
Thornton took a no-decision after allowing two runs (one earned) on eight hits, no walks and 10 strikeouts. Colby Blueberg (3-1) earned the win after allowing just the one unearned run in the 11th. Zach Strecker (1-4) took the loss.
The rubber game will feature Kenny Mathews (3-7, 4.09) against Michael Austin (4-7, 4.09) Thursday evening with first pitch scheduled for 7:05. Those not in attendance may listen to the broadcast live through wcthunderbolts.com.